By André Faust
The rally that is planned for March 29th 2016 at 11:00 am in front of the New Brunswick Legislature in Fredericton is to let the current government know that New Brunswickers are not happy with the government recent budget decision and the division that they are creating between the two linguistic groups in the province.
According to rally organizer John Gardner;
“The objective of this rally is to send a clear message to government that NBers are not happy. We are seeing cuts to service while the debt increased. Cuts to health care threaten the lives of our most vulnerable. Cuts to tourism will hurt an industry that has the potential to have a banner year. The courthouse closure in St. Stephen will cost an estimate 1.2-1.5 million per year. The Choices Tour cost in excess of $540,000 without the people truly having an opinion. Privatization threatens jobs, while increasing cost. The government has stood in the way of Miramichi Lumber reopening and putting people to work. Cuts to transportation have meant that people have lost a part of their community. MLAs are not representative of the people who voted for them. This government has allowed a government official to foster an attitude of discord between the cultures.”
Gardner was ask if bilingual is also a reason for the discontent of the government. Gardner said; Bilingualism is an issue that I feel is being used as a division point. If the government can divide and conquer on language lines they will. Both linguistic groups are getting hit, Both D’Entremont and Dykeman should be banished.
Choices the Strategic Program Review consultation process was launched on January 13, 2015, the intent was to include a variety of engagement opportunities for New Brunswickers to participate in the decision making process by voicing their views in what direction New Brunswick should go.
According to the document “Choices to move New Brunswick Forward” more thatn1,200 people attended the public dialogue sessions; more than 100 representatives of stakeholder groups attended the meetings, more than 9,000 ideas were submitted online, by email or mail; and 28 groups hosted complementary sessions. In addition the document stated that New Brunswickers made it very clear that they want the government to first focus on eliminating waste and redundancy in government.
the session they were a “Total waste of time”
Rally organizer John Gardner attended two session and says from his experience with the session they were a “Total waste of time” and he felt that government was not listening. Gardner adds, the sessions were set up where you had tables set up, each table had a host who did all the talking, the ideas put forth was from a defined list. Bilingualism and the cost of bilingualism was not included in the list for discussion. Gardner attempted to speak on that matter, instead of a discussion a fight broke out, Gardner said.